by Clarence E. Macartney

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Chariots of Fire (7 of 18)
The Man Who Came by Night-Nicodemus
Clarence E. Macartney
John 3:2

Night has fallen over Jerusalem, and only the faint,
dim outline of its walls and towers and pinnacles is
visible. Here, close to the wall of the city, is a
garden. In this garden are costly tombs for the dead,
for it is a burying place for the rich. But now stand
aside, for here approach two men carrying a burden
between them. The odor of myrrh and frankincense and
cassia tells us that it is a body that they are
carrying, embalmed for the tomb. Now for a moment they
stop to rest, gently laying their burden down and
anxiously looking about as if some foe might appear to
interfere with their sacred and tender mission. At
length they come to the door of a notable sepulcher,
plainly that of a rich man, although the man whose
body they bear had not on earth whereon to lay his

One of the two men pushes open the great stone door
which swings easily on its pivot. Then down the steps
they bear their precious burden and deposit it in the
innermost recess. Silently they stand for a little in
affectionate contemplation and sorrowful reverence.
The old, old fashion; the old, old grief that has been
in the world since Abel died; the pain of separation
from our friends, which will be here until the grave
gives up its dead and the sea hers. Then the two men
ascend the steps, roll the great door shut, and
depart. Let us bow down in wonder and adoration, for
this is the Redeemer's body that these men have laid
in that tomb

Now comes another, and an earlier, night scene. This
time it is the Mount of Olives, the favorite resort
and refuge of the Son of Man. Below are the valley of
Kedro and, rising in the distance, the ramparts of
Jerusalem These olive trees on another night will echo
the Savior's groans and sighs. The very soil on which
he sits with his disciples will, on that night, be
crimsoned with his ...

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